The 2012 eBook

An experiment in agile self-publishing

CHAPTER 2 – Around 900 A.D.


“You can’t catch me!” Mahaway, a woman of one katun,or 20 years, and the youngest scribe in her city, said. She giggled while running, her long dark hair covering her face as she looked back at her best friend since childhood, Yochi.

“It’s not fair. You’re too fast,” Yochi said. He breathed heavily as he stumbled to catch up. “I need a moment.” He stopped to slap his pudgy stomach. “We astronomers don’t get out much.”

“Yes, poor you, looking at the stars each night and figuring out how the world works.” Mahaway came back to give her friend a poke. “What a terrible life.”

“Don’t you have places to be?” Yochi glared at Mahaway. He was proud of his work as an astronomer. His mentor had recently rewarded him for his latest calculations charting a more accurate Haab calendar—the one that determined the seasons.

“Not for a few more hours.” Mahaway brushed her hair out of her face. “Queen K’abel doesn’t need me until after nightfall.” Her green eyes shone as she thought of her beloved queen. Mahaway was young, but she was one of the city’s brightest scribes, and Queen K’abel often rewarded her analytical skills and writing abilities with free afternoons.

“I see. So you’re going to spend that time torturing me.” Yochi grinned.

“No dear, silly friend.” She grabbed his hand. “Come on! Now’s the best time and we don’t want to miss it.”

“Where are we going?” Yochi huffed, still recovering from their short game of chase.

“You’ll see,” Mahaway said, leading him up a dirt path.

Moments later, the two of them were standing atop a hill overlooking their city, the fading light casting a luminous glow on the structures laid out below them.

“Isn’t it beautiful?” Mahaway whispered.

Yochi reached over and touched her hand. “Yes,” he said as he watched the sky turn orange and purple and red.

From their hill they could clearly see the queen’s palace, with its steep staircase that led up to what looked like a giant, square eye. They stood together for a moment, content—the world silent and peaceful.

Mahaway started humming her and Yochi’s favorite tune. It was a lullaby their mothers had sung to them as children, when they sometimes slept over at each other’s homes.

Yochi joined in, softly singing the words:

Conex, conex palanxen, xicubin, xicubin yocolquin.

Conex, conex palanxen, xicubin, xicubin yocolquin.

Xola mayola, xola mayol, ea, ea, ea, o.

Conex, conex palanxen, xicubin, xicubin yocolquin.

The two friends made it through one round of the song, and then the horns sounded.

“That can’t be what I think it is.” Yochi grabbed Mahaway’s hand and squeezed it in fear.

Mahaway stiffened. “What is it, Yochi?”

Yochi pointed up. The sky was darkening, and in the haze between the dark blue and pink was a bright white ball, almost the size of the moon.

“Venus,” Yochi said. “War.”

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Hello! My name is Sabrina, and I like to write and experiment.

From now until December 11, be part of my agile self-publishing experiment by contributing to my Pubslush campaign! (Or at the very least, watch my fun dinosaur puppet video at

I’ll also be posting chunks of my ebook regularly, in hopes that you, dear reader, will give me feedback as I go along. It’s called agile publishing, and I figured if a publishing house can do it, why not an indie author?

My story will revolve around the Mayan Calendar and 2012 (good time to do it, right?) I have a very rough outline that I will be developing and tweaking as I go (with your help, of course.)

So please, subscribe to my blog and help me shape the story as I write it. I want to write something that you will want to read. Any input would be greatly appreciated!

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